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Kallali H.,Water Research and Technologies Center | Yoshida M.,Institute for International Cooperation | Tarhouni J.,National Institute of Agronomy INAT | Jedidi N.,Water Research and Technologies Center
Water Science and Technology | Year: 2013

The 'Cap Bon' peninsula in Tunisia suffers from intensive tourist activities, high demographic increase and industrial development. As groundwater had been for a long time the main water source, aquifers had been subject to a severe depletion and seawater intrusion. Despite the measures taken prohibiting new drillings and water carrying by the construction of a waterway linking the region to the north-west region of Tunisia, the problem of water shortage persists. Artificial recharge of groundwater with treated wastewater has been decided as a technique to replenish the region aquifers. A pilot plant was constructed in the early 1980s in Souhil Wadi (Nabeul) area. Many experiments have been carried out on this plant and have led to controversial opinions about its performance and its impact on groundwater contamination. This contribution concerns the application of the procedure that we developed from the generalization and the formalization of the United States Environmental Protection Agency (US EPA) methodology for the design of treated wastewater aquifer recharge basins. This upgrading procedure implemented in a spreadsheet, has been used to retrofit the Souhil Wadi facility in order to improve its performance. This method highlighted the importance of the safety factor to estimate wastewater infiltration rate from clean water permeability measurements. It has, also, demonstrated the discordance between the initial design parameters of Souhil Wadi facility and their current status as they have changed with time and the infiltration capacity of the basins has been affected by clogging. Indeed, it has been demonstrated that with the current state of clogging of the basins, the design infiltration rate limited by the most restrictive layer (6.1 cm/hr) corresponds to 22% of the surface infiltration rate reached after a drying period of 10 d, which means that we need more basins to absorb the daily loading rate. The design method leads to the construct ion of five basins of 961 m2 (31 × 31 m) each, with one basin being flooded for 3 d with 27 cm of water daily and rested for 10 d. The current status is completely different as only four basins are constructed with 324 m2 each. Many actions in the short, medium and long term have been advised in order to improve the system performance. © IWA Publishing 2013.


Turki N.,University of Tsukuba | Shehzad T.,University of Tsukuba | Harrabi M.,National Institute of Agronomy INAT | Okuno K.,University of Tsukuba
Euphytica | Year: 2014

Salinity is globally a major constraint for crop production. Breeding for salinity tolerance is an effective approach to improve crop production and productivity under saline conditions provided it is based on a good understanding of the genetic control of salinity tolerance. This study deals with mapping QTLs for salinity tolerance in durum wheat (Triticum durum) by association analysis using SSR markers. A total of 119 varieties were treated in 100 mM of NaCl solution and the salinity tolerance indices (STI) for several traits were calculated as parameters to assess salinity tolerance. Among the traits assessed, the increased proportion of dead leaves (%DL) was the most suitable parameter for assessment of salinity tolerance in durum varieties at early vegetative stages because of a broader range of variation among varieties and narrower range of variation within varieties compared to other traits. The QTL associated with salinity tolerance using %DL as a parameter was detected on chromosome 4B. An additional 11 QTLs associated with seven parameters using STI of other traits were detected on chromosomes 3A, 5A, 5B, 6A and 7A. © 2014, Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht.


Maissa B.J.,National Institute of Agronomy INAT | Walid H.,National Institute of Agronomy INAT
Natural Product Research | Year: 2015

Essential oils isolated by using hydrodistillation from the aerial parts of Thymus algeriensis and Thymus capitatus Hoff. et Link. from different locations of Tunisia (Kef, Takelsa, Zaghouan, Fahs and Toukeber) were characterised. The chemical composition was analysed by using gas chromatography/mass spectrometry, the major component of T. capitatus from Kef and T. algeriensis was thymol while carvacrol was the main component of T. capitatus from Zaghouan, Fahs and Toukeber. The antifungal activity of the oils and some pure components was assessed by the in vitro assay against several fungi and oomycetes. T. capitatus (chemotype carvacrol) exhibited the strongest antifungal activity followed by T. capitatus (chemotype thymol) and T. algeriensis, indicating that carvacrol might have a stronger antifungal activity than thymol. © 2014 Taylor & Francis.


Ben-Jabeur M.,National Institute of Agronomy INAT | Ghabri E.,National Institute of Agronomy INAT | Myriam M.,National Institute of Agronomy INAT | Hamada W.,National Institute of Agronomy INAT
Plant Physiology and Biochemistry | Year: 2015

The potential of thyme essential oil in controlling gray mold and Fusarium wilt and inducing systemic acquired resistance in tomato seedlings and tomato grown in hydroponic system was evaluated. Thyme oil highly reduced 64% of Botrytis cinerea colonization on pretreated detached leaves compared to untreated control. Also, it played a significant decrease in Fusarium wilt severity especially at7 days post treatment when it was reduced to 30.76%. To explore the plant pathways triggered in response to thyme oil, phenolic compounds accumulation and peroxidase activity was investigated. Plant response was observed either after foliar spray or root feeding in hydroponics which was mostly attributed to peroxidases accumulation rather than phenolic compounds accumulation, and thyme oil seems to be more effective when applied to the roots. © 2015 Elsevier Masson SAS.

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